The average age of the participants was 35.05 (SD: 6.06, IQ Range: 9) years with age range of 23-46 years. The mean of crystal consumption period was 7.42(SD: 3.61) with a range of 1-14 years. In addition to the crystal, all participants mentioned the simultaneous use of other substances with 15 (78.9%) participants smoking cigarette as the most common simultaneous substance. Analyzing the demographic profile of the participants showed that 9 participants (47.3%) had primary school education, 5 (26.3%) had secondary school education, and 3 (15.7%) were high school dropouts. were ethnically diverse, and were unemployed or working (as listed in Table 1). According to the qualitative data, the reasons for the first crystal use were categorized in six factors. These factors are listed in Table 2.
3.1 Crystal usage to other drugs rehabilitation
Most participants (14 people) mentioned morphine as the reason for the crystal use. In other words, they presumed that by consuming the crystal, they could rehabilitate the addictive drugs containing morphine, such as opium, crack, and heroin. They falsely believed that crystal does not have hangover and body pain.
“I went for it because of a dirty thought; I meant a dirty thought that I was thinking of leaving crack and I heard that crystal doesn't have morphine and that's why I went to abuse it." (Participant #3)
3.2. Lack of awareness of the addictive nature of crystal
A large number of participants (12 people) believed that the crustal was not addictive and its consuming doesn’t contain the hangover of morphine, and that is why they started abusing it. In Iran, drug dealers are called "butlers". The butlers told the studied participants that the crystal did not cause any addiction or dependence. On the other hand, the participants also believed that the crystal did not cause physical dependence and that if you wanted to leave it, it would not be physically painful. However, after abusing it, they realized that although the crystal does not cause any physical dependence, it severely affects the consumer psychologically.
“The butler told us that a new drug has arrived that is very fun and not addictive. I said it's addictive!! Because we considered addiction to be a pain in the body, and we thought that a substance that causes pain in the body is addictive, then our way of thinking was like this, and we were not at all familiar with mental and psychological hangover. We considered hangover to be physical, while the crystal is not physically hangover, and the body has no pain when it breaks. We were told to abuse these substances, which gives them a good mood and makes them feel weird, and we did that.” (Participant #4)
3.3 Stimulating curiosity in public with crystal-usage friend
Curiosity and observing the crystal usage by friends, introducing it, and their compliments have caused a number of participants (4 people) to mention it as the main reason for the first crystal use. Curiosity intimate young people to try new drugs when they enter the consumer market.
“We were sitting in a group. The crystal had just arrived and we were curious what it was. When they complimented us, we abused it.” (Participant #6).
“Then, I saw how many people were consuming and enjoying it. Then, one of my friends said, "Give it a try, but I said no and I didn't." But after a while we went there, I wanted to know what it was, and I abused it.” (Participant #15).
3.4 Affordable and convenient use
The participants believed that the price of crystal was so cheap that it could be easily paid for. In addition, the comfortable and easy usage of crystal is one of its advantages over other drugs, so that they can abuse it with just a small pipe and a match or lighter wherever they want.
“The addict population, e.g. myself, see the cheaper substance, the more it definitely abuses. With this market situation, most young people are moving towards abusing it, because it is both easy to abuse and comfortable, while its price is suitable.” (Participant #1)
“Yes, they said that these substances are good substances and there is no hangover. It is very cheap and very easy to abuse. Pour it into a small pipe, and the lighter inside the pocket, wherever we want to go, even in the bathroom, we can easily abuse it. We light a match under it and then consume it.” (participant number#5)
3.5 Anti-sleeping effects and improved work efficiency
Another reason for the first consumption of crystal which was mentioned by 7 participants (36.8%) was its anti-sleeping effects, and the increased efficiency of work. They only wanted to test the crystal for the first time and take advantage of its potential to help them stay awake, but this usage continued after the first time. People who need to stay awake at night or those who are looking for more energy in work are among those who abuse the crystal.
‘‘I ate methadone and then fell asleep while guarding. One day, I was at the house of one of my friends, I was making nonsense, he was also consuming industrial substances and he said that if you abuse this, you would not sleep. Then I told myself to abuse it once to see how it is!! I tried it once and then it continued on.” (Participant #13)
“Yes. I was told to abuse it, because my work is hard. My friend told me to come here and abuse it once. If you abuse the crystal, your work efficiency will be increased. If you work 12 hours now, you can work 18 hours. If you work 18 hours, you can work 20 hours. Early on, I was able to work the same amount of time, but later it didn't take more than an hour.” (Participant #9)
3.6 Therapeutic and other misconception
A number of participants had misconceptions about crystal that caused them to the first usage. One of them stated that the reason to abuse the crystal was to eliminate the kidney stone and believed that the crystal use helps to excrete the kidney stones:
“I had kidney stones and worked somewhere as a laborer. I asked one of the kids who worked there how it was that you worked for three days and went to work again. He said that I would abuse the crystal and this would reduce the body water and I could not work anymore. Then I said that this should be good for kidney stones.” (Participant #12)
A few people also believed that as they heard that the crystal usage can increase the sexual pleasure and affects the beauty of appearance and face, they started abusing it.
“My friend was abusing it and I didn't know. His first words it was good for sex and beauty. At first, it was talk, and student spending was high. Most doctors abused it to wake him up. Now I have nothing to do with advertising. For these three reasons, I also started abusing it.” (Participant #16).